By Marvin Weisbord, Sandra Janoff, Jack MacNeish
Read or Download Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!: Ten Principles for Leading Meetings That Matter PDF
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Additional resources for Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!: Ten Principles for Leading Meetings That Matter
Does the purpose make sense to you? What will the output be? Is it achievable in the time you have? Whether you are a formal leader, content expert, or facilitator, you will get more if you know going in what product you want. Whether you plan for 10 people or 1,000, the ﬁrst question to ask is “Why? What is required here? ” We make it a practice at the start of every meeting to check our understanding of the purpose against that of the participants. ” During the boss’s opening remarks in a multilingual strategic planning meeting, we noticed some people looking blank when asked if the goal was clear to everyone.
Though they took on a momentous task, they had among them the capability to pull it off. Often, however, the task is too big for the people involved. Perhaps the most common planning error on planet Earth is convening groups to do tasks with key actors missing. This results in a well-known ritual widely reported in the newspapers. A position paper is written. A group of high-level authorities endorse a course of action. Experts agree on what’s best for everybody else. Many people assume that if big names or experts bless a plan, anyone who sees it will salute and start implementing.
If you were to walk in on one of these, you would see several small groups, each with its own chart pad, sitting in a bright, airy room, working intently with high energy on an important task. The groups are managing themselves—keeping time, taking notes, making room for all views, and preparing reports to the whole. They have a task that draws on everyone’s skills and experience. The ﬂipcharts could well be in a language that neither you nor we understand. You would have no way of knowing who is leading the meeting.